If you thought winter approaching meant giving up local produce, eggs, cheese and more, you’re mistaken.
Lower Makefield farmer Sandy Guzikowski has been watching the past few years to see what vegetables and fruit are available from our local farmers during the winter months. She’s counted over 30 types of produce. Surprised? And it’s not just root vegetables that are turning up. Many greens, especially those raised in hoop houses continue into the early months of winter.
Guzikowski decided to start Endless Bounty, a food buying club for those of us craving local goods long after most farmers’ markets have closed for the season. “It’s for people who really like a variety of vegetables and know what to do with greens and root vegetables,” says Guzikowski. It’s also for people who want to “support local agriculture and see it expand into year-round production.” Year round production? Yes, that’s what many see as the future of agriculture even in colder climes like ours. Hoop houses and greenhouses are making season extension – extending later and beginning earlier – a reality for Bucks County. Guzikowski hopes her buying club will eventually extend into the spring months. For now, it will begin in late November and reach until mid-January.
The Endless Bounty buying club will also emphasize providing organic and free-range food products and will work with a network of farms that grow food this way to bring members a variety of the highest quality items available.
It all starts with a member’s commitment of $250 which translates into 8-10 weeks of produce and other goods. Then each week an email goes out with products that are available that week and members respond with their preferences. Pick up is at Guzikowski’s farm in Yardley. As opposed to a CSA (community supported agriculture farm), where members buy a share and get what is available, Endless Bounty’s members will have more flexibility in choosing their product. They don’t even have to pick up each week. They can skip a week and use that “credit” the following week.
And the choices are many. Guzikowski expects the following vegetables and fruit to be available from over a dozen local farms: Onions, potatoes, sweet potatoes, carrots, daikon, radishes, turnips, rutabagas, beets, lettuce, bok choy, micro greens, kale, collards, chard, spinach, tatsoi, mustard greens, cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, winter squashes, cranberries, wheat berries, apples, Asian pears, fennel, mushrooms, and eggs. If enough members are interested, she’ll also arrange for artisan bread or cheese to be available.
Interested? Here’s how you can sign up. Email Guzikowski at firstname.lastname@example.org. She will email you information and a form to complete. Pick up will be at 1205 Big Oak Road in Yardley.
So don’t fret about winter’s arrival. Help yourself to locally grown produce and help local farmers expand their growing season.